To Friend or To UnFriend

7 11 2010

This past weekend, I did a spring cleaning on my Facebook “Friends” and “unFriended” about 30.

The criteria was as follows:

1 Co-workers with whom I don’t have a relationship outside of work
2 Old friends that were re-acquainted & we just didn’t talk anymore
3 Old school mates who I didn’t talk to much in high school anyway
4 Acquaintances that I probably won’t run into again and with whom there was very little interaction.

I had already been a bit selective on who I “friended” (for example, only one person from my son’s scout troop got in, but she’s a good friend of mine outside of the troop), but just felt a lack of privacy and like voyeur fodder.

And, really, I don’t think Facebook “Friends” are a big deal.  My friends ARE a big deal: You know, that ones that share  writing class, Ladies’ nights, Florbaideazon, goofy moments, tears, dinners, movies, the pain, the joy…and not just Apps and Likes.

If someone unFriended me, I really wouldn’t notice & wouldn’t care.  I know who my friends are and it doesn’t matter if they are “Friends”.  As long as they still pick up the phone when I call or smile when they see me, things are good.

So I unfriended.  After someone said “I don’t know what I did, but ok…” and I responded with “it’s not personal”,  I did some research (on-line, of course).  The Facebook Etiquette 101 opinions range from ‘it’s a huge slap in the face, don’t unFriend EVER unless the person is a crazy, status-posting creeper and then you should just limit the profile’ to ‘it’s not a big deal, no reason not to weed out the garden”.

Here are two of my favorite comments from another blog about this:

  1. Allison says:
    Tue, 11th Mar 20087:14 pm 

    I’ve unfriended people, not as a b*tchslap as you so callously determine all unfriendings to be, but because as I get older I dislike the idea of being so prominent on Facebook. I haven’t talked to so-in-so in years (or maybe even ever) since that awkward freshman year when I friended everyone, just to seem hip.

    I find it’s better to keep things a little more private now, just for personal protection. Who knows, maybe he did too? Friend-count’s not so important anymore and suddenly you’re heading into the professional world. You want to know who sees what, and if you don’t know someone real well, why let them see all about you?

    I’ve been unfriended by people who’ve friended me. I don’t take it personally. It’s just Facebook, I mean, they’re not out slandering your name on the street.

  2. Melissa says:
    Wed, 12th Mar 200812:30 am 

    I agree with Allison. I’ve unfriended people who I realized I don’t actually know or barely know. Also, I’ve unfriended people who for one reason or another I don’t want being able to see all my pictures, etc. I’m sure I could’ve been unfriended by people, but I don’t really know. Either way, I don’t think its that big of a deal.

The bottom line is: I feel better. I have set more comfortable boundaries for myself.  I understand that some people may be hurt, but hopefully they will realize that this isn’t a junior high school drama. It’s just a social networking site and we all choose to use it differently and the manner in which we each decide to use it can change over time and that’s ok.

Sometimes I wonder why I don’t unFriend Facebook.

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3 responses

7 11 2010
Mari

I like the reminder that ” it’s not junior high school drama” and we shouldn’t take it personal. Sometimes life away from Facebook feels like old “school drama”. I wish it was as easy to un-friend people in the real world as it is in the virtual one. And, can I just let the virtual world know that you are one of the coolest, greatest, most beautiful people I know and cherish!!! You hear me people! (okay, I’m done)

13 11 2010
dayna

Awwww, thanks, Mari. And back at ya, babe!

29 11 2010
wholly jeanne

the gal who was the school bully, the gal who made the elementary school lives of so many of us absolutely miserable (mine, included) sent me a fb friend request. i accepted . . . then about 2 weeks later, i unfriended her. she probably didn’t notice, but it sure gave me some degree of satisfaction. in other words, fb brought out the junior high schooler in me.

on another note, welcome to #reverb10. look forward to your reverberations during december.

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